“Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” by Ransom Riggs

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Now this is a book a little different than many, yet it could make you think of another one. The scenery is a remote island off the coast of Wales, where sixteen-year-old Jacob and his father set foot on after a family tragedy. Jacob’s grandfather was always a mysterious person, travelling all over the world and telling little Jacob all kinds of interesting stories with mythical creatures and peculiar children. Apart from that, grandpa has some strange pictures to accompany the narration, so it was made more realistic. Those were all supposed to be part of his long journeys, but at a point Jacob stopped believing in them. The pictures could easily be fake!

As the boy arrives in the island and visits Miss Peregrine’s Home, he comes to realize that those children may have actually been and they may have indeed been kind of different than most. Either that, or they had serious health issues… Jacob is still to find out how correct he has.

The story is full of emotions and hidden messages as throughout all of it, the reader comes across the relationships held between his grandfather and the children he grew up with, between Jacob and his grandfather, between Jacob and his father, between Jacob and his new friends. It is projection of our world and our actions. How do we treat people, especially when they are different or they have special capabilities? What do we take for granted? How do we behave in a family circle and outside of it? One of the matters that is touched upon is the inertia people fell into when others do things for them and they don’t have to make living, just like Jacobs father could not finish any book, as there would be no actual return for him. He had enough money to live on. It also broaches the matter of friendship which is a huge chapter in everyone’s life. How do we cherish our friends and what would we actually do for them? Are they worthy of our life, love and friendship? When it comes to a crossroad which is the path we would take?

The creepy photos in the book set an unusual scene, yet they raise questions to their authenticity and source. Is it a circus parade? Is it fake pictures by accident or on purpose? Did those children actually exist?

The book was turned into a film by director Tim Burton and it will be released in theaters this September (2016, in USA). Given the director’s fame and the whole cast, it is expected to be a hit. Let’s see if it will reach up to the readers’ expectations.

To have a taste, check out the film’s official page.

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children
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